Education begins with the parents

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While pondering our state of education, I am reminded of a popular television series Star Trek . Captain Kirk and his crew would lead us on an imaginary journey through space. Mr. Spock would occasionally caution the captain about illogical thinking borne out of excessive ambition.

Now I wonder if our quest for academic excellence is driven by blind ambition. Amid watered-down disciplinary standards, minimal parental accountability, we continue to scratch our heads.

Parents are responsible for their child's education and discipline -- period. Not the teacher, the coach, school counselor or public safety officer, but the parent.

Our public schools were established to afford access to education for all. Unfortunately, however, our school grounds have evolved into a day-care-center atmosphere, or a place that supersedes parental responsibility.

It makes no sense for a teacher to spend valuable instruction time trying to correct disorderly or sometimes disrespectful students. We should come to the realization that you cannot make a child learn or a parent become more involved in a child's education, but negligent parents and disorderly students can be held more accountable for their actions.

By the way, why is alternative school free, and how many such schools are we willing to build?

When school officials remedy the learning impediments of neglect and misbehavior in our classrooms, then maybe they can switch their focus to some educators who are more concerned about their social lives and personal gain than giving quality instruction.

Is public education about professional salaries and benefits, or is it about inspiring young minds to strive for literary excellence and intellectual thinking?

It is possible that our educational standard has been so watered down over the decades that it may take decades more to correct.

But let us press on toward the mark and re-establish our public school system as a paradigm of excellence.

Brian Green, Augusta


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